Sunday, 29 July 2012

Pinwheel Table Runner

Quilted table runners can be great for using up stash.  This one is 12" by 40" finished size and it really doesn't use much fabric.  It's made using Nancy Cabot's dancing pinwheels quilt block and I think it's really fresh and cheerful looking.



Each quilt block is made using four white 2.1/2" squares, sixteen 2.7/8" brown squares and eight 2.7/8" squares of both yellow and white.  All the half square triangle units are made using brown with either yellow or white fabric.  For the table runner I used three complete blocks.



After sewing the quilt blocks together I felt that it needed something to finish off the ends, so I added a row consisting of two brown 2.1/2" squares and four brown/yellow half square triangles at each end.  That seemed to do the trick and round off the design.  Then it just needed layering, quilting and binding.


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Rose

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Silver Lane Quilt Block

I'm quite excited about this quilt block.  It's called silver lane and I can see it making a wonderful grid with the dark blue lines when it's made into a quilt.  I've made it here with four shades of blue and a white background but I think that when I make more for a quilt I'll vary at least the pinwheel colours if not all three of the blues apart from the dark.  Could make a great scrappy quilt.


To make it as a 12" finished size block you need four 2.1/2" squares in light blue and white and eight in medium blue.  The rest of the block is made using 2.7/8" squares to make half square triangles:  four each in light blue and dark blue, four each in dark blue and white and two each in sky blue and white.  Then it's just a case of following the photo for placement.

I hate doing this so early in the year, but this week I have put in an order for some Christmas fabric - all the Christmas in July articles that I've been reading have made me realise that if you're handcrafting your gifts you need to start early.  Gone are the days when the children were small and we didn't anticipate Christmas till December 1st so that they wouldn't get over excited.

I've continued working on my weather vane and steeple quilt.  I've corrected the mistake on the top right where I put one row in upside down and now I'm going to use the same design at the top and bottom to go down the sides.  I'm quite pleased with the way the design has turned out - simple but effective.  More photos when it's progressed to a nearly finished project.


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Rose

Monday, 23 July 2012

Owl Quilt Block

This quilt block is from the Kansas City Star and obviously it was the name that attracted me.  I'm just not sure that I can figure out the owl - or are there four owls?

I've made it as a 12" block using 2.1/2" squares or 2.7/8" squares for the half square triangles.  There are a few rectangles in the middle which makes it a bit different to construct.

The only way to get the dark brown square into the middle of the quilt block was to surround it with 1.1/2" rectangles, two at 1.2.1/2" long and two at 4.1/2" long.  That way the combined size is the same as two 2.1/2" squares.



Apart from that, it's a straightforward quilt block to construct once you've made the half square triangles - and there aren't even as many of them as in some quilt block patterns.  I used four squares each in light brown and white for the half square triangles, nine 2.1/2" dark brown squares and eight each light brown and white 2.1/2" squares.


The project that I'm working on at the moment is called Weathervane and Steeple and it's a Nancy Cabot nine patch quilt block.  It's quite unusual looking in its own right, but it also does lovely things when you put several of them together.  I'll let you see it when I've finished the quilt.



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I hope to see you again soon.
Rose

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

L Quilt Block

Sometimes when you look at a quilt block you know it's going to look completely different when several of the blocks are sewn together.  That's what I felt about the L quilt block as soon as I saw it.  I don't usually make quilts with a lot of yellow in them, but this time it seemed to work.



This is the individual L quilt block.  There's an orange square in the V between the yellow and brown which doesn't show up very well - I should have used a much stronger colour there, but you can see why I thought that all those strong brown lines would give a different design when the quilt was sewn together.


To make this quilt block pattern, you need eight 2.1/2" lemon squares and the rest of the block is made using 2.7/8" squares for half square triangles:  two squares each in brown and orange, eight squares each in brown and lemon and four squares each in lemon and yellow.



My main work in progress is a quilt using half square triangles in fading colours and fading sizes.  Still very much in the planning stage at the moment - do I alternate the direction of the half square triangles, do I begin with a pinwheel in the middle?  It certainly helps having a board that I can pin everything to and then leave it there for a while to keep looking at.

The lovely Rosie at Seek It Out is going to stock the kits for my Celtic wall hanging and she's asked for ideas for miniature wall hangings for beginners.  These two are intended to be a landscape and a seascape.  They are more dependant on the fabric than on quilting skills.



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Rose



Sunday, 15 July 2012

Crowning Glory Quilt Block

The London 2012 Olympics are approaching so quickly that I thought that it was time I looked among my quilt blocks for something appropriate.  I found the crowning glory which seemed suitable - especially when I made it in fabrics representing gold, silver and bronze.



To make it as a 12" block I used a 4.1/2" gold square in the centre surrounded by first bronze, then silver and then bronze again.  The white and silver squares are 2.1/2" and the half square triangles are made from 2.7/8" squares - four squares each of bronze and white and eight squares each of bronze and silver.


While I was tinkering with quilt block patterns, I also made another one that has been on my to do list for ages - the memory quilt block.  I love the way the star seems to explode outwards.




It has a similar construction to the crowning glory block in that there's a 4.1/2" square in the middle and it's made in six rows of six squares.  Once again I used 2.1/2" squares with 2.7/8" squares for the half square triangle units.  I think that if I make it again I'll use something like red for the central star and fading colours spreading out from there.


My quilting now has to take second place while I make a few cotton skirts for my daughter for her trip to India later this week.  Oh to be young again!

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I hope to see you again soon.
Rose

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Guam Table Runner

I seem to be making quite a few table runners these days.  I think that they give me a chance to say that I have finished something when so often I feel that I am just adding to my work in progress pile of projects.  This one is made from the guam quilt block and it finishes at 10" by 40".

I made it using one 2.1/2" red square in the middle of the block and lots of half square triangles:  sixteen blue/grey and eight red/grey.  These were made from 2.7/8" squares.  The squares are laid out in five rows of five squares, sewn together across each row and then the rows are sewn together.  I made four of these blocks and had intended to add red sashing between each block.  When I placed the blocks in line I decided that I liked the way the red from one square joins with the red from the next square so I just sewed them together without sashing.

After that it was just a case of layering, quilting and binding as for a quilt.  Some of the pieces have a bit of a three dimensional look similar to tumbling blocks so I thought that this would look good on a table.




My main work in progress is a donkey wall hanging, but so far I only have photos of his ears:  quite a way to go on this one, then!


My really big news for this week is that my daughter graduated yesterday and I had a wonderful day in Nottingham with her for the ceremony.  The rain held off even though all the grass was very water logged.  Does this count as a completed project?





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Rose

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Flying Stars Quilt Block

I've just found a great quilt block for scrappy quilts.  It's called the flying stars quilt block and it uses three colours plus white or some neutral background colour.  I can imagine it being made with a different three colours in each block - it doesn't take much fabric and it would be a great way to use up scrap fabric.



Apart from the square in the middle the entire block is made with half square triangles - eight in pink'white, four in brown/white, four in red/white and four in pink/brown.  Putting them all in the right place with the seams facing in the right direction does take some concentration - but is definitely worth it!  I'll write up a full tutorial on the website later this week.


This is one that I have put on the website today.  It's called
Hope of Hartford quilt block and it's another one that I can see being used with different colours as a scrappy quilt.  This one needs a bit more of each fabric than the flying stars above, but would look great in bright colours.


So many quilt blocks to make, so little time .....

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Rose


Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Scrappy Quilt Borders

I love trying out new ideas for quilt borders and recently I made a french braid quilt which gave me an idea for a quilt border that could use up lots of odds and ends of scrap fabric.




I cut piles of strips of fabric 3.1/2" by 2" and another pile of red 2" squares.  This makes quite a wide border, but you could always adjust the length of the strips if you wanted a thinner border.




With the red squares in the middle I laid out all the strips of fabric on either side.  I began by putting two strips of the same fabric next to each other but then decided that I preferred the random look.




I began by sewing the brown strip to the red square and then sewed the green strip to both of these.  That's the base so then it's just a case of building from there.  The cream strip goes next on the left hand side and then a red square with another strip on the right hand side.



Once I had the length that I needed it was just a case of pressing well before trimming.





I trimmed the top and bottom first and then the sides.  The safest way to trim the sides is to place your ruler on the strip so that you can cut a definite amount from each side.  Otherwise you risk having your border strip an uneven width.



My work in progress right now is a tutorial for quilting rope borders.  In order to keep the process simple I seem to have lots of diagrams showing each stage - templates would be so much easier except that they are never the right size!

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Rose